It's Better to Travel than Arrive?

"To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive"

Robert Louis Stevenson, Virginibus Puerisque, 1881.

"Robert Louis Stevenson speaks utter tosh and has

obviously never flown long haul economy class"

Kristy, first ever blog post, 2011.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Airline Review : TigerAir

I did a 24 hour hop to Melbourne on my last trip back to Adelaide to see my lovely hubby who was visiting for the Lions rugby tour, and flew TigerAir for the first time.

I checked out comparison prices and Qantas wanted $560 for the return flight, whilst TigerAir only charged $160 (including all taxes, luggage etc.).  That made the decision fairly clean cut.  After all, it's only an hour flight over and back, Qantas has just gone mad with its pricing.

TigerAir is another airline that does what it says on the tin, they're cheap and they get you where you need to go.  There's food available for purchase, though I didn't buy any on the short flight.  I did see one guy purchase two Pot Noodles and scoff them down - no wonder he looked ill as we landed!

They land in Melbourne at a distant stand and there's a decent walk in the breeze to the terminal.  Ah, suck in that potent combination of avgas, airline exhaust, ground tyre rubber and wind!  The bulk of the walk is semi-undercover, but I don't think it'd be much fun in the rain.

You're allowed two pieces of carry-on luggage with a combined weight of 10kg.  I knew I was over on the flight back, so loaded up my winter coat pockets with purse, phones, chargers, and anything else that would fit.  I was still at 11.4kg, but they let me through (and then I speedily decanted everything right back into my bags - cheeky!).

One handy tip I discovered was that you can ask for an exit row on check-in (sometimes they appear to offer it, it's FREE) and people in exit rows board first.  First.  Before the massed ranks of passengers that have queued to board.  So you can sit comfortably whilst everyone huddles by the boarding door, and then stroll over when they make the first boarding call - you go straight to the front of the line.  WINNER!

On departure from Melbourne, you go to an old shed type area, not the normal airport departure area (look for the signs).  It's not flash, but there are a few places offering awful coffee and a newsagency with papers and mags.  There's not much sitting space, so I followed the lead of some other cheeky peeps and snaffled one of those body massage armchairs that you have to pay to get a massage from.  Needless to say, I didn't drop any coins into the slot (neither did anyone else).

Fly TigerAir and use the money you've saved to go shopping!


  1. My brief acquaintance with Tiger Air has left such a bitter taste that I will never fly with them again and will strongly dissuade family, friends and colleagues from using this airline. I did not receive timely information about the terminal change at Perth Airport, now departing from the same area as the international terminal. The domestic terminal has always only operated in one area, 11 km away from the international terminal. Needless to say, when I got to the right terminal, I missed my flight, because of Tiger Air’s cost cutting practice of utilizing the same staff for check-in and boarding. This leaves the check-in counter unattended for 45 minutes before flight departure. Their explanation: it is our policy, because we are an on-time airline. When the same staff returned after the flight left I was stunned by their unprofessionalism. One example amongst others is a staff member verbalizing that she was not in the mood to answer a ringing phone. The 45-minute policy and the consequential standard charge of $85 to book another flight is a nice little money-spinner for Tiger Air. I was only one of 7 people queued up. The Tiger Air Arrivals in Melbourne was shocking, being nothing more than a warehouse with a demountable toilet block set up in one corner and a fenced off carousel. I normally book through Webjet and fly Virgin, Jetstar or Quantas. Over the past 12 years I have never had any issues with regard to correct and timely information, staff members' level of professionalism or the quality of the service. Additionally, the way Tiger Air’s Customer Care dealt with my complaint in recent days can only be described as a brush-off by a company aiming to maximize profit at all costs. Looking at other reviews of Tiger Air it has become clear that booking with them is literally a “lucky dip”. Missing a family Christmas celebration due to Tiger Air has made up my mind for me to never fly with them again.

    1. My goodness! You poor thing. I would be absolutely flipping furious if that had happened to me. You missed Christmas? I've only ever flown them the one time (when I blogged about it), but it sounds like their "zero care" attitude when things go wrong is very similar to Ryanair here in Europe. Grrrr.


Thanks so much for taking the time to read and comment!